With the Congress-Janata Dal Secular coalition government on the brink amid a major rebellion, Karnataka BJP chief B S Yeddyurappa on Monday said he was confident of forming the government in the state within the next four to five days.
Mr Yeddyurappa's claim came on a day when the assembly speaker K R Ramesh Kumar fixed July 18 for taking up the confidence motion moved by Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, whose government is on the verge of collapse after 18 legislators resigned from the assembly.
"I am quite confident that BJP government will come into existence in the next three to four days. The BJP will give the best administration in Karnataka," Ms Yeddyurappa told reporters.
Mr Yeddyurappa claimed Kumaraswamy would fail to save the coalition government.
"Kumaraswamy will not be able to continue as chief minister. He too knows it. I think he will quit after making a good speech (in the assembly)," Mr Yeddyurappa, who had quit in similar circumstances early last year, said.
Mr Yeddyurappa had stepped down as chief minister before the confidence motion was taken up for voting as he failed to muster enough numbers for the BJP which had emerged as the single largest party with 105 seats in the 224-member House.
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy had on Friday called for a trust vote to prove his strength on the floor of the house, declaring that his government was stable. The same day, the Congress, JDS and BJP packed off their lawmakers to various resorts, sequestering them from any poaching attempts. "I have full confidence of winning, why should we worry," Mr Kumaraswamy told reporters.
Sixteen legislators of the JDS-Congress coalition have resigned and two independent lawmakers have withdrawn support. Speaker Ramesh Kumar has yet to accept the resignations. He told the Supreme Court on Friday that he would need time to decide whether the resignations were coerced or voluntary. He also said many of the rebel lawmakers faced disqualification.
If the resignations are accepted, the coalition's 118 members will come down to 100 and the majority mark will drop from 113 to 105. Rival BJP has 105 members and the support of the two Independents, which takes its tally to 107.
(With inputs from PTI)